5 Easy Steps to an Alkaline Diet
As we all know, Kris is a huge fan of the alkaline diet (see here, here and here). In her Top 15 Crazy Sexy Diet Tips, her second most important tip is to “Learn about pH, the acid/alkaline balance, and say goodbye to the standard American diet (SAD), acidic diet in favor of alkaline foods.”
However, I know from experience that this is easier than it sounds. In this little tutorial I want to make the alkaline lifestyle easy to start, implement and stick to. Since 2004 I have made it my mission to make the alkaline lifestyle easy. I’ve learned from experience and trial and error. As with much in life, abundant health is easier than we’ve been led to believe. Remember these core principles:
- Take it slowly, taking baby steps, day-by-day, rather than going full-on from day 1!
- You’re not meant to be perfect. You’re still supposed to enjoy life. Enjoy a day off, have treats, enjoy your favorite foods and socialize. Don’t feel like to be healthy you have to change your personality.
This is meant to fit your lifestyle, not the other way around!
5 Steps to Living Alkaline
My research has found that around 90 percent of people are chronically dehydrated and this is having a massive impact on their quality of life. It amazes me when people say that they don’t really drink water! How do they get through the day? They must feel so crappy!
Getting properly hydrated will make a huge difference to your health, energy, vitality and immunity. Everything is influenced by the quantity and quality of the water you drink. Aim to filter your water and make it alkaline with a pH between 8 and 9.5.
Hydration Action Steps
- Drink 6-18 cups of water each day. A good rule of thumb is to drink half your body weight in ounces.
- Drink lemon water: 2 cups of lukewarm, filtered water with freshly-squeezed juice from 1/4 lemon. It helps cleanse the digestive system, ignite your metabolism and buffer excess acids. Despite the lemons being acidic in their natural form, lemon water is alkaline-forming to the body once consumed.
- Enjoy organic herbal teas such as Rooibos, peppermint and nettle.
2. Go Green!
The alkaline diet is also about alkaline foods. There is conflicting information on the Internet about which foods are alkaline and which are acid-forming. This simple rule covers 90 percent of foods:
Alkaline foods are those you already know are good for you: fresh vegetables, salads, leafy greens, low-sugar fruits, nuts, seeds and healthy oils; unrefined, organic, high-water-content foods.
And acidic foods are those you already know are bad for you: refined foods, fast foods, trans-fats, meat, dairy, sugar, caffeine, white bread, white pasta and rice, condiments, alcohol, chocolate, chips, ice cream and pizza.
Aim for a ratio of 80/20: Consume 80 percent alkaline foods to 20 percent acidic foods.
Take it slowly! Almost everyone who I have ever coached or had contact with who tries to do the alkaline diet 100 percent from day one fails within a week and usually after 24 hours.
The alkaline diet is not restrictive at all, not difficult and is really simple, once you’ve gotten used to it. People who try to be perfect from day one miss the chance to learn, experiment and find meals that work for them and their family. They end up feeling hungry, fed up and restricted.
It is far better to transition and get there slowly, by sticking to it for the long-term rather than being perfect for a day or two and then crashing.
By doing a simple breathing exercise once or twice per day you give your body a huge helping hand in removing these acids. Plus it allows you to stop, focus your mind, visualize and relax, which is also nicely alkalizing.
Sit comfortably, close your eyes and follow this simple breathing pattern:
- Breathe in for the count of 2.
- Hold for a count of 8.
- Breathe out for a count of 4.
- Repeat 10 times.
This is one of the most overwhelming and confusing parts of the alkaline diet for most beginners. There are so many supplements out there, all promising different things and all claiming they are better than the others.
Here are the core supplements I recommend:
Green powder: This is a combination of powdered grasses, fruits, vegetables and sprouts with a focus on wheatgrass and barley grass.
Alkaline water: You can make alkaline water in a number of ways including using a water ionizer, pH drops or adding freshly squeezed lemon.
Alkaline minerals: The primary way that your body buffers acids is through the alkaline minerals: sodium, magnesium, potassium and calcium.
Omega oils: Taking an omega 3 supplement or an omega oil blend including omega-3, -6 and -9 is really beneficial. I recommend Udo’s Choice Omega Oil Blend. Udo is a world-leading researcher in omega oils for nutrition and he has made a fantastic product.
The alkaline diet is simple when taken slowly, when you aim for 80/20 rather than perfection and when you still allow yourself treats and fun. Take it easy, have a sense of humor with it and enjoy it.
Keep it simple and if you mess up, don’t beat yourself up! Go for a walk, refocus and just start again! The rest of your life is a long and interesting journey, so enjoy it with the health, energy and vitality that the alkaline lifestyle brings!
Ross Bridgeford is the co-founder of Energise for Life, the world’s largest alkaline diet website. After seven years, he’s now known as “The Alkaline Diet Guy’” after writing over 600 articles and 100 videos on living with health, vitality and alkalinity!
Photo credit: James Bowe